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Switzerland County 
Rural Heritage Tour
A Thiebaud Family Wedding
September 27 - 28, 2014
Photo Credit: Anjali Fong Photography

We had a story to tell. Interpreters in period clothing represented various family members as preparations were made for the celebration on Saturday and the event took place on Sunday. Historical society board members Anita Danner, Joyce Benbow, Helen Parks, George Reed, Sundra Whitham and Barry Brown became living history performers. Other volunteers dressed for the occasion included Judi Terpening, Ken Benbow, Mary Terpening, Anita Reed, Mariam Hammond, Danni Pennington, Myrna Madigan, Geri Emmelman, Kent Rhoades, Noah Hughes, Dawn and David Beardmore, Sarah Wolf, and Michael, Alli and Laini Proffett.
Research concerned bridal etiquette of the early 1860s, cake and refreshments, vows, and clothing styles for the bride, groom and others in attendance. Clothing was purchased and sewn. The house was cleaned and the food prepared. We were ready for a wedding!

Volunteer Andrea Kappes, transforms a contemporary ivory silk dress into a fashionable 1860s gown.

“Thank you” doesn’t seem enough to reward all the wonderful volunteers named above. Add to that list Tom Dawson, Tony Catanzaro and Ken Benbow who put up the two tents. Many of these same were previously named for their concerted efforts in getting the house and property ready. You’re amazing!
If you were a visitor at the Rural Heritage Tour, you provided the best “thank you” possible. You supported our event. 
Then I received an email from Dennis Smith, a Thiebaud family descendant who has been helping us get to know their family through sharing his extensive genealogical research.

It is we, the Thiebaud Descendants that wish to thank the Switzerland County, Indiana, Historical Society for saving our “Thiebaud Family Home”. Especially the many workers and volunteers that daily make all of this possible. This was a one of a kind Historic Event, 150 years to the day, of John Shaw Malcomson and Emily Jane Thiebaud Malcomson marriage. It could have only happen by your loving commitment and sacrifice to Switzerland County, Indiana History. What a great Honor, it was to witness this event.  
Many other Descendants have expressed their gratitude, one being William Malcomson and the Malcomson’s from Seattle, Washington area that could not attend, but, they sent their greetings to the assembled guests. Other Living relatives that were not there, I am sure were there in spirit. We believe those that have passed, especially Edna Malcomson, Charles Shaw, Justi Thiebaud, Mary Banta Thiebaud, and too many others to mention, would have smiled kindly on the event that happened this last weekend. 
I believe it is of life altering importance to know who your relatives are and it is our responsibility to keep their memories and stories alive to “Honor our Mothers and Fathers”. This is why I support physically and financially, the Switzerland County, Indiana, Historical Society and I encourage all to do the same. 
Dennis Smith
Descendant of John Shaw and Emily Jane Thiebaud Malcomson
Delighting the guests was a delicious Italian cream cake by Ruth Osborn. A pretty array of cookies by historical society members Kay Hyde, Wanda Benzing, Helen Parks, Kathleen Perlich and Stasia Wiseman were quite satisfying, along with a refreshing punch. Yes, we greatly enjoyed our day. 
Taylor Benning was a stunning bride in her ivory silk gown  as seen in Godey’s Lady’s Book & Magazine in the early 1860s. A treasure in our museum collection is a quilt that was made by incorporating the actual fabric from Emily Thiebaud Malcomson’s ivory silk wedding dress.

Jacob Schmerr was a handsome groom, donning top hat, white shirt with a silk bowtie, pants with suspenders, vest and a frock coat. 
With Olivia Kavanaugh as a delightfully sweet flower girl and Mary Streett as dear friend and bridesmaid.
A beautiful lemon curd cake made by Ann Mulligan took center stage on the reception table.
With most of the guests also in period attire and  Mike Danner as the pastor J. D. Griffith the wedding proceeded in style.